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Dean's Message

Dean's Message

A Habit of Excellence

In the words of Aristotle, "We are what we repeatedly do; excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." This newsletter will give you a window on the kinds of things we do every day. For example, in just the past few months, the Corporate Institute announced a new mentorship program to give our students more business law opportunities. The American Historical Association and George Mason University's Center for History and New Media awarded the Law Library's Clarence Darrow Digital Collection the 2012 Roy Rosenzweig Prize for Innovation in Digital History. Professor Richard Frase received the 2012 Equal Justice Award in Research from the Council on Crime and Justice, Professor Stephen Befort (’74) was elected Chair of the International Labor Society and Professor Michele Goodwin was elected to the Board of Trustees for the Law and Society Association. Third-year student John Cetta received the Minnesota Justice Foundation Student Volunteer Award, the National Moot Court team advanced to Nationals and 2L student Matt Little was elected Mayor of Lakeville, Minnesota.

In that vein, I'm pleased to announce that one of our most distinguished alumnae has agreed to serve as a vice-chair of our GENERATIONS campaign. Kris Erickson (’72) has long made the Law School one of her priorities, as an ongoing member of the Board of Advisors and Chair from 2010-11. She and her husband Ron (’60) have supported the Law School financially over many years with a series of generous gifts. Kris will join Elliot S. Kaplan (’61) as vice-chair and Bruce W. Mooty (’80) as chair of the campaign. Thank you Kris, Elliot, and Bruce for your leadership.

I'm also happy to welcome Mike Tompos, who joined us in November as the Director of Advancement. Mike brings 25 years of experience in fundraising, most recently as director of major and planned giving at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. His experience and success as a fundraiser and development program leader make him the ideal choice to lead us to our $70 million campaign goal and beyond.

As the calendar year comes to a close, I hope you will make a contribution to the Partners in Excellence Annual Fund. Your ongoing support will ensure that we can sustain the habits of excellence that for generations have produced great lawyers and great leaders.

Best wishes for the coming year.

David Wippman
Dean and William S. Pattee Professor of Law